Markley home to cockroaches, students report

By Justin Dawes, For the Daily
Published September 26, 2013

Students in Markley are reporting some unwelcome visitors.

There have been about two dozen complaints of cockroach sightings at Markley Residence Hall this semester, two of which occurred in food preparation facilities. The complaints began shortly after the start of a demolition project in the lot next to the residence hall.

University Housing spokesman Peter Logan said the roaches are migrating from the Arbor Heights demolition site and entering Markley through open windows or doors with loose thresholds.

University Pest Management services and Plant Operations have responded by taping off manholes. They will continue to monitor the premises every two weeks while also responding to complaints, Logan said.

Inside the residence hall, pest-management staff placed a food-safe treatment in the main kitchen and one in the former Hideaway restaurant, both areas with complaints. They have also placed roach-bait pesticides in living quarters and other areas with known cockroach activity.

“And then when they do put down … roach bait, it’s placed out of the way of residents just so there’s no contact there,” Logan said. “Their approach is actually more towards monitoring and prevention than just broad application of pesticides in living areas.”

Logan said the type of American roach found in Markley doesn't thrive and probably won’t breed in the residence hall’s dry environment. The roaches are expected to return to the pipe systems after the project is finished mid-October.

LSA freshman Natalia Estes, a resident of Markley, said she and others have seen multiple roaches.

“You just hear people screaming, and you know there’s a cockroach,” she said. “We had one in here (our room) last week. It was climbing up the wall.”

Logan said roach problems are not unheard of at the University. In January 2012, South Quad Residence Hall’s café, Ciao Down Pizzeria, temporarily closed because of a cockroach infestation.

“Ann Arbor is no different than any other city in the United States. We have cockroaches living in the sanitary systems.”